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Der dreizehnte Apostel : Roman by Wilton…

Der dreizehnte Apostel : Roman (original 1993; edition 1994)

by Wilton Barnhardt, Gabriele Krüger-Wirrer (Translator), Peter Hahlbrock (Translator)

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3221134,434 (4.15)15
Title:Der dreizehnte Apostel : Roman
Authors:Wilton Barnhardt
Other authors:Gabriele Krüger-Wirrer (Translator), Peter Hahlbrock (Translator)
Info:München : Droemer Knaur, 1994. Gebunden, 1024 S.
Collections:Your library
Tags:Amerikanische Literatur

Work details

Gospel by Wilton Barnhardt (1993)

  1. 20
    The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco (liao)
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    The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (kullfarr)
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    The Book of Air and Shadows by Michael Gruber (BobNolin)
    BobNolin: Gospel was a lot more fun to read, but the two are very similar. There is an ancient text interwoven into the current day story (Gruber does the better job of faking an ancient text, in my opinion). There is a hunt for said manuscript. And the finding of it will change recorded history. Great stuff.… (more)
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    The Gospel of Judas by Simon Mawer (liao)
    liao: Interesting story, but light on theology, church history. However, it also involves a biblical manuscript.
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» See also 15 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Gospel is a novel about a lost gospel of Matthias, the thirteenth disciple who replaced Judas. A sardonic burn-out professor named Patrick O'Hanrahan and a shrinking violet grad student named Lucy set off around the world to trace the manuscript and learn what was so dangerous about it, that until this point all copies had been presumed burned in the third century for heresy.

One of the most charming elements of the book was that God had some wonderful asides. God, in parenthetical comments, answered characters' doubts and questions, encouraged them, scolded them when they needed scolding. Adorable, I thought, and interesting in that both scholarship and fundamentalism talk about God and around God in a third person sort of way. Lucy's adventures and exposure to new expressions of faith broaden her religion to something more enlightened than her previous "Irish Catholic vs. Protestants" pettiness; and O'Hanrahan has no shortage of religious demons of his own. So as they travel, God is a persistent force beside them, enduring and good. It's endearing and fun to see them grow in their negotiation of their new faiths.

The recurring conflict over this gospel was its possession and reception: whose care should it be in, the dispassionate and careful scholars or the passionate but biased religious fundamentalists? Such a conflict is par for the course whenever the challenge of the historicity of religion comes into play. Careful historians should have an unbiased approach, of course, but perhaps they also ought to be aware that destroying people's faith is a weighty decision.

So among the vested interests that characters express for the possession or suppression of this gospel is the concern that it will undermine all of Christianity. Which, maybe, but what would Christianity be without a truth to it? Many of the actors pursuing the gospel are only self-interested swindlers - whether to suppress a document that would completely reshape the canon and history of Christianity, or to become famous by publishing the gospel specifically in order to discredit Christianity. Yet in all of the historical locations that Lucy and O'Hanrahan visit, the plurality of religious expressions prove that faith has never been grounded in historical documents or dead words, but rather in a living and experiential approach to finding how God fits into the world. ( )
1 vote the_awesome_opossum | Apr 1, 2010 |
This book took a while to get into and some of the schtick gets a little bit tiresome, but most of its quirkiness is actually charming rather than precious, and there's a seriousness underneath the considerable superstructure of the novel that is carried off quite well. ( )
  ehines | Sep 7, 2009 |
Cover flap says, "An eccentric, hard-living old Chicago-Irish professor and an attractive, eager young student careen and comb through Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and America in search of a lost biblical gospel and their own souls."

Vastly entertaining read. But not fluff. I had to keep my thinking cap on during this adventure. ( )
  avanta7 | Apr 25, 2009 |
I did enjoy the parts that took place in England, Ireland, and Italy, but after that it was all downhill. Easily could have been three hundred pages shorter. ( )
  5hrdrive | Feb 8, 2009 |
One of the most enjoyable and engaging novels I have ever read. (TLK) ( )
  TLKsLibrary | Dec 8, 2008 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
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To my Blessed Trinity Mary Barnhardt, Joyce Carter, and Betty Grigg
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I had lost my faith, Josephus.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0312119240, Paperback)

An intellectual detective story with the grand entertainment of a nineteenth-century novel, Gospel concerns the search for a lost first-century gospel of the Bible, a document that could shake the foundations of Christianity. Theological student Lucy Dantan and disillusioned ex-Jesuit Patrick O'Hanrahan pursue clues to the gospel's whereabouts across three continents through dozens of colorful locales. This book is a literary delight in the vein of Possession and The Name of the Rose.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:05 -0400)

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